Self-aggregation in soft matter; nanostructure; cryo-TEM; cryo-SEM
Self-assembly systems and complex fluids
The research program has the general theme of studying self-assembly and nanostructure, on the supra-molecular level, in systems of interest in basic science and in technology. Much of the effort has been focused on self-assembly systems and complex liquids because these fascinating systems play an important role in areas from physics and chemistry to biology and medicine. The approach in this work has been direct imaging of the nanostructures studied, and the correlating the images obtained to results of indirect methods to rule out experimental artifacts, and to obtain precise quantitative data. An important part of the work has been the understanding of nanostructure/system properties relations, and testing and developing theories that describe the thermodynamics of these systems. The major tool in our studies has been the electron microscope. A substantial part of our microscopy is done at cryogenic temperatures as this enables us to directly visualize complex liquids at their native state. We use digital light-microscopy and image analysis and reconstruction to augment TEM and SEM work. Small-angle x-ray scattering is also applied regularly in the work to obtain quantitative data, based on our electron micrographs.